I also use Tasmanian timbers to craft sculptural objects. Like George Harris, I am proud to be represented in the Wood Design Collection in Launceston; a collection that highlights the best of Tasmanian designer makers.
Furniture pieces I have created using Tasmanian timbers are also in four museums in Australia and America. Our unique timbers helped place them there and, for this, I am grateful.
Most everything George Harris spoke about at this rally concerning the need to protect our minor species so that in 1,000 years a future artisan would have access to this same wood is imminently logical.
However, where I have to disagree sharply with George is who to trust to make sure this happens.
A response to George Harris, aka Woodworker, HERE
Twenty six years ago I arrived in Tasmania and was so gobsmacked by the awesome beauty of its timbered landscape that I decided to immigrate.
Twenty six years later, I have seen the best of our forests trashed by Forestry Tasmania in its pursuit to clear fell our native forests into pulp plantations. The evidence is overwhelming. The science is irrefutable. The economics are damning.
From loggers, to saw mills, to Forestry Tasmania staff, my argument has never been with the many good people working in the forestry business. Where I firmly place the blame in the tragic waste of Tasmania’s potential for a world class forestry industry is with the top echelon of people at FT and our Labor and Liberal governments who have neither the wisdom nor vision to really give a shit about minor species and their preservation.
George writes, “If the cost of harvesting was just carried by just Special Timbers, none of us could afford to buy the timbers we want and need.” This is true. The question is whether or not we can afford to treat our forests like an open pit mine to extract a few opals from the debris.
My suggestion is to create objects of such high value—musical instruments, boats, sculpture—that the very high cost of extracting the wood from Specialty Timber Forestry Reserves is insignificant compared to the purchase price of the object for sale. In other words, we need to stop making trinkets with our most precious, rare Tasmanian timbers and start crafting objects more truly representative of their value.
Throw your barbs George at those who have willfully with malice and forethought depleted our forests.
If it were not for the good folk at TWS and Still Wild, Still Threatened, the Huon Valley Environment Centre and the many other NGO’s trying their best to conserve our forests from needless destruction, than I doubt that in a few years we would have any minor species—locked up or otherwise—to make even the smallest of objects to sell at Salamanca.
Made by Peter Adams from Tasmanian timbers